Sydney knows how to appreciate a food event. From Rootstock to MAD Mondays, the city's community of diners, chefs and restaurateurs frequently turn out to not only appreciate good food and wine, but to talk about the big questions important to the industry.
This month, Out of the Kitchen will continue that tradition. The one-day event, part of the Symposium of Australian Gastronomy, is designed for the food and hospitality industry to explore its future, celebrate what people are achieving with their work (aside from awards and accolades), and how we can do better.
Held on a Monday, the event is targeted at those who work in the industry and will feature the likes of Kylie Javier Ashton, general manager of three-star Sydney restaurant Momofuku Seiobo; Two Good Co's Angie Prendergast-Sceats; and Palisa Anderson of Boon Luck Farm, among others. Sharon Salloum, co-owner and chef at Almond Bar in Darlinghurst, will be in conversation with author and commentator Benjamin Law, discussing Salloum's experiences training Syrian refugees to work in hospitality.
Butcher Grant Hilliard from Feather and Bone will demonstrate how to break down a goat as he shares his knowledge of regenerative farming and sourcing sustainably grown produce. "The environmental and social costs of the way food is currently produced are unsustainable," says co-owner Laura Dalrymple. "By educating ourselves about food and how it's produced, we can become more independent and influence the systems that feed us."
In the aftermath of this year's season of restaurant awards and best-of lists, Out of the Kitchen will finish with a roundtable of chefs, front-of-house professionals and food media to ask: do we still need food critics? Is Instagrammable the new critically acclaimed? And do we need another restaurant list?
Attending MAD Symposium in 2016 and 2018 taught me that a cracking food event is truly made by serving really good chicken burgers, so Out of the Kitchen attendees will enjoy local favourite El Jannah's chicken rolls (or falafel rolls) for lunch.
Out of the Kitchen, 9am-4pm, 19 November, Female Orphan School, University of Western Sydney, cnr James Ruse Dr and Victoria Rd, Rydalmere, NSW. Tickets $75, from gastronomers.net